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A Bird in the Hand

Mist nets were not new to the YSTOP students. They had helped Brian Hickey set them up at dusk at on their first night at the King Campus to try to catch bats, though despite their patience no bats flew in.  But this time, with the mist nets set up as part of a session with Dr. Bridget Stutchbury in the woods behind their York classroom, their patience was rewarded with the capture of a chickadee. The students were delighted to have a chance to hold the bird in their hand, before it was released. Urban and rural students marvelled at the tiny, resilient creature, with a growing respect for the complexity of the environment we share with them.

Bridget also shared information about the Birds in the City project, and explained the technologies that are used in tracking and identifying individual birds to understand their migratory and reproductive behaviours. It was another example for them of how field work is connected to laboratory studies.